Tight security marks France's Bastille Day holiday

Pauline Gross
July 16, 2017

But for now it appears Trump leaves Paris feeling like he has made a new - and rather unlikely - friend.

Trump had appeared isolated at a meeting of world leaders last weekend in Germany over his decision to withdraw the USA from the Paris global climate change agreement and his protectionist stance on trade.

TRUMP: French and American patriots have fought together, bled together and died together in the fight for our countries and our civilizations.

French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte leave after the traditional Bastille Day military parade on the Champs-Élysées in Paris yesterday during Donald Trump's visit. Critics have pointed to that meeting as a possible link between Trump's campaign and Russia's effort to interfere in the USA election. Judging by previous comments by Macron, it's unlikely that's the case.

By our count, Trump clasps the hand of Macron for just under 30 seconds, during which he pats Macron's right hand with his left hand at one point and at another, practically jerks the French president towards him with such force that his right foot actually leaves the ground. Macron later described it as "a moment of truth" between them. Trump says in a tweet that the military parade featuring USA and French troops was "magnificent".

While the majority of French think the visit was a good idea, the most vocal voices have been those who oppose the visit and oppose the USA president. "But we'll see what happens", he said.

Terror attacks in France have killed more than 230 people since January 2015.

There is little downside for Macron.

Trump and his wife, first lady Melania Trump, spent two days in Paris.

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Like it or not, the White House is still the most powerful executive in the world. "At the same time, Emmanuel Macron during his campaign and at his first meeting with Vladimir Putin was critical of Russian interference", Gomart said.

Trump comes to France beset by allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 United States election, with emails released on Tuesday suggesting his eldest son welcomed an offer of Russian help against his father's Democratic rival Hillary Clinton. Remember: this is Donald Trump talking, this isn't a normal or acceptable way to behave.

Trump questioned about Trump, Jr.

Macron expressed hope that Trump's perception of France has changed after the visit.

As one American journalist quoted by "Le Monde" noted, Mr Trump's "narcissistic personality responds well to compliments".

Trump, also dogged at home by an investigation into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US election, appeared on Thursday to leave open the door for more talks on the Paris accord which he pulled the United States out of earlier this year.

Macron made a point of detailing both the long history of ties between France and America and the areas where he and Trump disagree as he hosted the USA president for a Bastille Day visit. Despite no political experience, he pulled together an overwhelming legislative majority in France's parliament and recent polls show him with strong public popularity. Mr Macron's more pluralist vision is at odds with Mr Trump's often gauche and insular "America First" messaging.

The Paris visit, however, seemed to establish the inklings of a working relationship between these two seemingly incompatible figures.

Other reports by GizPress

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